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Re: [azsecularhumanists] media claim President Hussein had a sorcerer

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  • thekoba@aztecfreenet.org
    ... Dear Eric, Interesting difference. Catholicism teaches that angels have free will and that the bad angels are in hell with the devil. ... The Christian
    Message 1 of 5 , Aug 15, 2003
      >Dear Kevin,
      >In traditional Islamic doctrine aside from the animals
      >and plants and God, of course, there are three kinds
      >of beings: angels, humans, and jinn ("genies" in the
      >corruped Latin-ised version of the word.)
      >Angels are like messengers of God and cannot sin.

      Dear Eric,

      Interesting difference. Catholicism teaches that angels
      have free will and that the bad angels are in hell with
      the devil.

      >Animals likewise are by nature doing God's will and
      >are good (though some are unclean or dangerous, but
      >morally they are not bad).
      >Humans and jinn, however have the ability to choose
      >right from wrong. Humans are made of "clay"; the jinn
      >from "flame of fire". In terms of language, the word
      >jinn comes from a root meaning "unseen." The common
      >word for "crazy" - majnoon - comes from the same root
      >(j-n-n) and literally means "posessed by jinn."
      >So the jinn are unseen beings made of some intangible
      >stuff. Satan is one of the Jinn (not an angel, since
      >angels can't sin and therefore can't "fall.")
      >Magic is associated with the jinn. Usually, I think,
      >it involves people seeking the help of jinn. That is
      >not necessarily satanic, but it is "risky" because it
      >is commonly believed that although most people choose
      >to be good, most jinn choose to be bad, and therefore
      >seeking their help might involve satan and might
      >result in lies anyway, regardless of what you "find
      >out." (This is a nice built-in explanation for magic
      >not working when it doesn't: the jinn were being
      >deceptive, as they usually are.)
      >So magic is a bit like dealing with the criminal
      >underworld; you think you're getting a loan but you
      >might end up with your kneecaps shot off or just plain
      >dead. With magic, of course, there's the threat of
      >Pious Muslims just pray if they need supernatural
      >help. God is One, and so ultimately He can make stuff
      >work out for you or not. Magic and jinn are still
      >subject to the ultimate control of God even if He
      >sometimes allows them to screw around.
      >The fundamentalist types might also say that to deal
      >in magic is in a sense denying God's allpowerfulness,
      >or at least doubting it. That would be really bad,
      >except that it isn't quite that, any more than it
      >would be if you asked a doctor for help with your
      >medical problems or a mechanic to help with your car.

      The Christian Science people feel like that about
      consulting doctors, though I don't know what they
      think about consulting mechanics.

      >Therefore, dealing with magic is not (from a standard
      >religious point of view) exactly the same as turning
      >into some sort of satanist. But it's unwise and
      >spiritually rather like dealing with gangsters, i.e.,
      >carries a spiritual risk, you might get involved in a
      >lot more than you bargained for, etc. Besides which
      >whatever the jinn do for you might be a lie and
      >deception anyway.
      >So a good Muslim trusts in God and doesn't dabble in
      >those things.
      >That, I think, is more how the common folk might look
      >at it.
      >There was one element in that story about the
      >sorcerer, though, that I thought very unlikely (i.e.,
      >impossible). Somewhere didn't that old man say that
      >Saddam Hussein had some golden statuettes "protecting"
      >him? Now that really sounds like idol worship and
      >seems highly unlikely to me. Any allegations about
      >statues sound made up, unless Ibrahim or somebody has
      >heard about them.

      Yes, there was something about that in the article.
      Apparently they had something to do with President
      Hussein being able to contact the king and queen of the

      >More common charms might be some little vial with some
      >bits of paper on which are Qur'an verses or something.
      > The religious scholars would say that's in no way
      >necessary, but they can't object to the Qur'an.
      >While on the subject of religion, al-Quds al-Arabi
      >reports that the Iraqi Shiite imam Muqtadi as-Sadr
      >called on Friday (today) for the Shiite religious
      >council al-Hawzah al-'Ilmiyah to take over running
      >Iraq since the Americans seem unable to do so.
      >Muqtadi as-Sadr earlier called for resistance to the
      >Americans and for establishing a guerrilla group but
      >he has since backtracked and now is not for opposition
      >and although he still wants that Jaysh al-Mahdi (army
      >of the Mahdi) to be formed, he insists it must be
      >Meanwhile the US has called on the moderate Shi'a to
      >oppose and Muqtadi as-Sadr and try to thwart his
      >For his part the Shiite Ayatullah Baqir al-Hakim, head
      >of the Supreme Council of the Islamic Revolution of
      >Iraq (a pro-Iran group that led the 1991 "uprising")
      >called on all Islamic countries to recognize the US
      >appointed governing council of Iraq the way Iran has
      >done. His brother, by the way, is on that US
      >appointed council.
      >Overall, it looks as though the Shiite clergy types
      >are moving closer to some sort of modus vivendi with
      >the Americans. Meanwhile Washington has officially
      >declared the political wing of the Mujahidi-Khalq to
      >be a terrorist organization. The Mujahidi-Khalq are a
      >kind of Islamic Marxist movement that took part in the
      >Iranian revolution but then were criminalized by the
      >Mullas. For decades they operated as an opposition
      >group with military bases in Iraq. It was said that
      >they helped out the US during the invasion, but now
      >not only their armed branch but also their political
      >wing (whose "terrorism" would therefore consist of
      >issuing leaflets and making speeches) is regarded by
      >the US as a "terrorist group."
      >This all sounds like Washington is doing some sort of
      >a deal with Iran.

      Yes, it could be that Washington is offering to stop
      supporting the "reformers" in exchange for cooperation
      with Iraq. Despicable but plausible.


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